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Why is my eye twitching?

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Probably everyone has had that feeling: ahh, my eye is twitching. You never know how to make it stop, how long it will keep going, or why it’s happening. The truth is that eyelid and eye twitching and spasms are pretty common, and no cause for alarm, but still somewhat of a mystery!

Usually it’s the bottom lid of your eye that twitches when you get that weird feeling. Most people report that a random eye twitch will come and go, but some cases have been reported as lasting weeks or even months! The medical term for it is myokymia.

What triggers eye twitches?

• Stress

• Being tired

• Strained eyes

• Caffeine

• Alcohol

• Dry eyes

• Nutritional deficiencies 

• Allergies

Generally, the condition is not serious, and is not an indication of any greater issues. The problem is that it’s not easy to treat when you don’t know the cause. The afflicted person usually needs to investigate their habits and get to the root cause so that they can avoid that trigger.

If you find that your trigger is strained eyes, make sure to see an eye care professional as soon as possible so that you can update your prescription. If your prescription is up to date or you don’t need one, it could be strain from looking at a computer screen for extended periods. In this case, you can still benefit from seeing an eye care professional and discussing special computer glasses to help you relieve the stress on your eyes.

Of course, if you’re stressed or tired in general, an eye care professional probably can’t do much for you. Make sure that you’re getting enough restful sleep, take an afternoon nap if you find that you hit the afternoon slump hard, and go to bed early to get more sleep. Talk to your physician if you’re getting enough sleep on a good bed and still feeling fatigued.

Drinking too much caffeine every day? It might be another facet of your stressed-out life that can exacerbate your eye-twitching problem. It’s tempting to partake in another caffeinated beverage mid-afternoon when you’re busy and can’t nap to perk back up. Building up more and more caffeine, however, can be a real problem and can lead to eye spasms that will hurt your productivity and be a big annoyance.

How can allergies make your eyes twitchy? Well, some experts think that the histamine that is released into your eye tissues when you rub your eyes can actually cause the lid to twitch. Since allergies make your eyes itchy and you rub them, that might be causing your eyelids to twitch as well.

Cramping and muscle spasms in all parts of your body can be caused by electrolyte imbalances. It’s one of the reasons that athletes opt for sports drinks over water. Sweat carries electrolytes out of your body, so they need to be replaced to make sure your brain and muscles function properly. If you have been sweating heavily or have a nutritional or other health issue, you may be low on electrolytes. See your physician if you think you may have a condition causing you to have low electrolytes.

The takeaway from this is that there’s no cause for concern, but that doesn’t mean it’s not annoying! The occasional eye twitch is nothing to investigate, but persistent twitches will certainly be irritating enough to warrant a look at your habits and possibly making some healthy changes.

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